Job Outlook Improving for Computer Scientists and Software Engineers
The Bureau of Labor and Statistics shows overall unemployment in March at 9.7%, similar to February and January. March saw 162,000 jobs added, but 48,000 of these jobs came from temporary government hiring of Census workers. The government expects the employment numbers to show a slight improvement over the next couple of months.
Like the rest of the economy, technology jobs have also been suffering from the down turn in the economy. According to TechServe Alliance, IT jobs dropped from February 2008 through August 2009, and then began to stabilize. However over the last two months, technology jobs have seen a combined increase of 25,000.
Here is some further evidence of the improving technology economy. A recent poll of CIOs by the Society for Information Management showed that budgets for employment and salaries could possibly increase this year compared to last year. For the second quarter of this year, the IT Employee Confidence Index compiled by Technisource (Harris Interactive) showed an increase of 4.4 points. All of this data seems to point towards a turn around in the technology economy, and increased hiring.
Still more good news, as EE Times recently released some of the results from their embedded systems survey, which they collect from participants at their conferences. The results showed that after a decrease in software engineers per project from 2008 (8.1) to 2009 (6.6), the number of engineers per project increased this year (9.4). So far this year, projects are utilizing more software engineers this year then in the previous two years. They will release the rest of their results on April 19th.
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Once the economy turns, technology industry employment should grow rapidly. The Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Handbook 2010-11 Edition showed the following data and projections for embedded systems developers. In 2008, approximately 28,900 people were employed as computer scientists with a median salary of almost $98,000. By 2018, the Bureau predicts there will be a need for almost 36,000 computer scientists. The Bureau also predicts that salaries for computer applications software engineers will grow from $86,000 to $92,000. The Bureau predicts this will be the fastest growing job need over the next eight years.